Monday, November 05, 2007

Silly Sprint

So, I went to pay my phone bill over the phone, as usual. I dialed *3 and started to put in the barrage of security information, when suddenly, they asked me to enter my passcode. This was a first. Not only had the automated system never asked this of me before, but I had never received any information regarding even having a passcode. I went through old bills, making sure I hadn't overlooked any notices that might have mentioned this. Nothing. So I called up customer service to find out what my passcode is, or how to get one. When the lady on the other end asked how she could help me, I explained to her that I was trying to pay my bill over the phone, and they asked me for a passcode, which has never happened before. Her response was to inform me that they added this function for security, blah blah blah. She then asked:

"Have you tried putting in your passcode?"

Another interesting thing, as I was shuffling through my old bills, I found a notice informing me that, whatever information that was normally in my bills would now be found online, instead of in my statement, for my convenience, so that "I wouldn't have to deal with all that paper." Wait a tic, more convenient for who now? Why not just say, "We decided to put this information online to save on paper costs."

I once had a similar, yet more frustrating situation with a Sports Illustrated subscription. I went to Best Buy, where the cashier offered me a free trial subscription. I specifically asked if it would be an automatic renewal at the end of the free 30 days, which I would have to stop before they began charging me. After the cashier assured me that I'd receive a statement asking me to renew, I signed up for the subscription (which I never even read). Shortly after, I got a notice in the mail saying:

"Guess what, you don't have to log on to renew your subscription. We'll renew it automatically at the end of the 30 days."

Well, I learned a lesson from that.

Seriously though, do these people realize that they're insulting their customers by placating us like to their children?

We know you're reducing the paper costs for the company, not for our convenience. Most of us don't care.

We know you're automatically renewing so that lazy people won't log on to unsubscribe. That is not convenient to us. If you just say, "You're subscription will be renewed automatically", without all the "for your convenience" bullshit, it will annoy us, but it won't insult us. Insulting us just assures that we will go the extra mile to log on and unsubscribe.

Off topic; interesting thing I realized, while looking for images to make that photoshopped picture at the top of this post, looking at pictures of clowns pisses me off.

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